Recurring Felines of Being Unable to Cope with Multiply Cat Shun!

Those who faithfully subscribe to these scribblings will recall that we adopted two factory cats in April, 2016 and then another from Younger Daughter’s workplace in May this year. Finally, only last month,  Much Better Half came home in with a bemused expression and yet another kitten.

Would you believe it, late last evening there came a set of loud meows at the patio door of the main house, and this cat demanded to be let in. When the door was opened she purred like a tractor and rubbed up against everyone in sight. In due course she showed signs of wanting out again, and I strongly suggested we comply with her request and allow her to depart whence she had come. I was heavily outvoted, and she has stayed while notices go out on media and to neighbouring houses and shops.

This is getting ridiculous, and the existing cat (over-) population is not too amused, although remarkably tolerant so far.

Our guest is remaining furiously affectionate towards all of us, and has one of the loudest and most enduring purrs I have ever heard.  She ignores the five dogs completely.

A furious debate is now ongoing regarding a name. The girls called her Spot, and I said that was more suitable for Fox Terriers or Dalmatians and is far too common. I suggested Flash because of the white flash-like markings. R doesn’t like that one.

Anyway, we must all be insane …

© August 2017 Colonialist
Posted in Africa, Cats, Personal Journal, pets | Tagged , , , | 18 Comments

Shining Exam Pulls

With a WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge theme of Ooh, Shiny! featuring “Diversions, distractions, and delightful detours”, few things will take my attention away from everything else as completely as when the main ‘shiny’ signals, in spectacular manner, that it is settling down for the night to stop shining within sight.

So, submitting a swift selection of sunsets, one very recent and the other two from past years:

© August 2017 Colonialist
Posted in Africa, Challenge, Nature, Ocean, Photography, Weekly Photo Challenge | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Ill Literate

More appropriate for my author site, as was the other one dealing with the rebirth of Tabika.

Leslie Hyla Winton Noble

Guess which two authors the statements below refer to? 

(1)   Books sexist, racist and elitist and devoid of literary merit. (BBC)

(2)   Books with no literary merit; unsuitable for school libraries; promoting harmful or dangerous concepts; stealing from other cultures. (Numerous sources)

 The first set is to Enid Blyton. 

The second set is to JK Rowling. 

What does one need to do to gain the approval of such critics? How does one define literary merit?  Perhaps the answers to those two questions is to write books of utter tedium to do with dull, everyday lives, and to frame them in elegant but not pretentious phrases. Instant best-seller NOT! 

Of course, regurgitation of belief or value systems within the framework of a story will find instant approval from those who subscribe to those systems, and instant vilification from those who do not…

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Posted in Africa | 4 Comments

Mad Pachyderm

For a belated stab at this week’s Photo Challenge on the subject of Elemental I am submitting these pictures.  Pity I don’t have one of a mental ellie to match my title.

Earth near water

Air and water

A fire to de-fy-a-tempts to barbecue.


‘How did you know, Holmes, that he had been thrown from a cliff into the river and then burnt before being buried?’
‘Elementally, my dear Watson.’

© August 2017 Colonialist
Posted in Africa, Beach, Challenge, Photography, Really Awful Joke, Weekly Photo Challenge, Wordplay | Tagged , , | 15 Comments

No Gig



      For Wordle 312


Bag party answer: best band back to play?

But agent with a laugh blows smoke your way,

And tries to push the price to squeeze blood from a stone

With coffers bare, reflect that band best left alone.

© August 2017 Colonialist
Posted in Rhyme, Wordle | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Merited Reproofs

In this case, my title doesn’t mean deserved rebukes, but proofs for the re-issue of Tabika and Tabika Book Two which have merit!
These have just come from the printers. I am pleased with my new cover designs:

I am looking forward to having my first two books back in print. They, and their cat theme, have always had a special place in my heart. In these new editions, I have managed to repeat some illustrations a few times to add interest as characters return to the story, and to introduce a few new ones from my files. Samples appear on the back covers:

The only thing I have misgivings about is whether, during the decades since the books were first written, child literacy has been ‘dumbed down’ to an extent which will frighten off a lot of the target readership. One of the intentions during the writing of the tale was deliberately to use language somewhat beyond the then-normal vocabulary of children around the six-to-ten-year age group, and let interest in the story create a familiarity with such words. It worked well for my own children. Can it continue to do so in this day and age? Or will these novels now have to be marketed as only suitable for adults?

© August 2017 Colonialist
Posted in Cats, Children's Fiction, Cover Design, Fantasy, Writing | Tagged , , , , , | 16 Comments

Smoke Defector and Self-Service

I started smoking in late teens and kept it up steadily. So did Much Better Half. For a while, I switched to a pipe, but it involved too much time-wasting in fiddling about with it. I returned to cigarettes, and would average about ten a day.

Then came the time when I caught Elder Daughter, as a rebellious teenager, at it. I read the riot act, and she dissolved into floods of tears. A few weeks later, there was an exact repeat of this scene. The third time, though, instead of tears I received the response, ‘But, Dad, you smoke!’

‘No, I don’t,’ I replied promptly, and didn’t touch another cigarette for three years. A wasted effort, though. Ironically, I gave up; she didn’t. So eventually I shrugged, said, ‘What the heck!’ and resumed. The years passed, grown-up daughter emigrated to England, and we visited them there to find she and husband had given up smoking and wouldn’t allow it in the house. We had to go outside in cold weather to smoke, and the result was we cut down drastically. Also, that we gave up smoking inside when back home. (Younger Daughter has never been tempted to try it, by the way.)

On our return, I also resolved to stick to the reduced number, which became between three and five a day over the next number of years.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, I lit a cigarette and asked myself whether I was really enjoying it. The answer was negative, so I extinguished it. A few days later I had another few puffs with the same result. Then, after going out to dinner and a few beers (always when I particularly wanted a cigarette) I tried again. Once more, a couple of puffs was all it took to convince me that I have lost my taste for the habit. That was Sunday before last, since when I have been a smokeless zone.

I find it as surprising as anyone.

It seems my Solid Silver Siggy Server, as a gift from Much Better Half many years ago, will now have to live in a display cabinet .

A couple of visitors to one of our several self-service snack stations which I snapped in passing today.

© August 2017 Colonialist
Posted in Personal Journal | Tagged , , , | 23 Comments